- Posted October 19, 2013 by
Nong Khai, Thailand
Thailand's Naga Fireball Festival in Nong Khai
Provincial authorities and the local community welcomed Yingluck, together with Commerce Minister Niwatthamrong Boonsongpaisan and Deputy Education Minister Sermsak Pongpanit.
Yingluck, who is also the first woman Defense Minister of Thailand, presided over the opening ceremony of the renowned Naga Fireball Festival and witnessed a traditional dance.
Naga Fireballs locally known as Bang Fai Phaya Nak is a phenomenon event which takes place on the night of Ok Phansa during which fireballs of various sizes burst from the bottom of the Mekong River, sprint above the water surface, and then move skyward before disappearing.
Local residents believe that the fireballs belong to the Naga, the king of serpents. This natural wonder is linked to a legend dating back to Lord Buddha’s times. It is said that the Buddha went to heaven to instruct his mother in his teachings. He spent three months there until his mother attained enlightenment.
On the full-moon day of the eleventh lunar month, the Buddha returned to earth and celestial beings built a golden and silver staircase for him to come down. With his loving kindness, the Buddha created a miracle by opening a view of the three worlds, namely heaven, the earth, and the underworld.
All Nagas living in the underworld admired the Buddha for the gratitude he showed towards his mother, so they blew out flames from the bottom of the river to celebrate.